Update: One of Malaysia’s most prominent and controversial bloggers, and a good friend, Ahirudin Atan aka Rocky, has written a post linking to this posting and joining in what may become a movement to seek more commonalities and to appreciate each other instead of finding fault with each other as malaysians and Indonesians.
Can we become truly serumpun neighbors again? Post your comment below and post one also in Rocky’s blog. Incidentally, Rocky admires these about Indonesia: Samsons. Broery. Widyawati. Ratno Timoer. D’Lloyds. As Unspun has said, we bloggers may succeed where governments and politicians have failed. Hehehe)
Unspun‘s Rasa Sayang(e) posting has brought out many fascinating comments, insights and perspectives. Some commentators (both Malaysians and Indonesians) were bigoted and emotional while others were prescient and made very good points. All in all Unspun feels it contributed, and still contributes, to a vibrant discussion on the commonalities and differences, as well as the different perceptions and misperceptions of two similiar peoples divided by a narrow strip of water.
Just for the heck of it, and in keeping with the spirit of Ramadhan, let’s all, Malaysians and Indonesians, try this experiment: Leave a comment here, telling us whether you are a Malaysian or Indonesian and tell us what you admire about the other people’s country.
It’s all very easy to criticize but can we praise also? (You can still rant and rave in the other postings but just for this posting let’s all do an intellectual realignment and think positive thoughts of each other)
Jut to kick things off Unspun, as a Malaysian who enjoys and prefers living in Indonesia, will wear two hats and tell you what I admire of each country. There are many thing, naturally, but here’s just one, from each hat:
As a Malaysian I admire the self confidence of Indonesians. They are happy and contented to live in their own skins. They are all different orang (as in Sunda, Java, Maluku, Manado, Bali, Tionghua, India, Arab…) but they all view and respect each other equally as Indonesians.
If I were to use my decade of living here to think as an Indonesia, I’d admire Malaysia’s ability to build great infrastructure like its great highways and modern buildings that are clean, functional and is not breaking down after six months.
OK, that should start the ball rolling…over to you now. (Comments in English, Bahasa Indonesia/Melayu/Malaysia all welcome!)